Host: Dr Gabriel Conroy, University of the Sunshine Coast

Gary Duffey, Gillian Smith, Julian Wakefield, Sunshine Coast Council

Gary Duffey has spent the last 29 years working in Local Government on the Sunshine Coast. Prior to 2007, Gary was involved in implementing and educate on an extensive range of State and Council local laws and policies, applicable to environmental health and environmental planning. Since 2007, Gary has been employed within the Sunshine Coast Council’s Environment & Sustainability Policy Branch where he has been responsible for the development, implementation and review of a range of strategically focussed policies, strategies and programs in the areas of climate change and sustainability. Gary has a number of undergraduate and post graduate qualifications including a Master of Climate Change Adaptation which was awarded by the University of the Sunshine Coast in 2009.

Our coast includes 60km of open shoreline and 70km of lower estuary foreshores, and is the defining natural asset of our region. It includes 248 beach accesses and 21 patrolled beaches, and underpins our economy and lifestyle.

Our Resilient Coast, Our Future’ is a project to develop a long-term Coastal Hazard Adaption Strategy that will:

  • ensure a shared understanding of coastal hazards, risks and preferred adaptation approaches

  • enable proactive planning and protection of coastal values and natural and built assets

  • reduce risk exposure and costs to council and the community.

The strategy builds on comprehensive technical work, including:

  • updating existing State mapping of areas exposed to coastal hazards

  • a leading-practice and tailored coastal hazard risk assessment

  • developing and applying a framework for adaptation, including pathways and actions.

The Strategy includes over 50 region-wide adaptation actions, as well as location-specific pathways, from present day to 2100. Along the Pumicestone Passage – from Kings Beach down to the southern council boundary – pathways incorporate responses to specific local issues, such as:

  • limitations of source sand for local renourishment

  • complicated areas of coincident tidal and catchment flooding

  • need to build resilience of natural assets to preserve their high values over time

  • implications of a northern Bribie Island breakthrough.

Developing the Strategy has been a joint project with the Queensland Government and Local Government Association of Queensland under the QCoast2100 program, and has involved several phases of rigorous community. When finalised in early 2021, it will provide us with a robust and adaptive plan to maintain a resilient coast, including the Pumicestone Passage, into the future.

Supporting Documents